Mission Codename Ancien(t) Wisdom
Happy June fellow Chardonnay fans! Here’s a first-timer discovery for the Wine Spies that is worthy of a special mission. Since Robert Parker declared that “under owner/winemaker Ken Bernard’s capable hands, Ancien is producing complex, elegant wines that merit attention”, this Domaine Carneros and Truchard apprentice and his artful labels have been amassing accolades from all over. Over the years he has also consulted for other great projects such as Donum Estate, Destino and Richard Perry.
The appearance reveals a bright and ripe pineapple gold with platinum accents that gleam with swirling. Highly perfumed on the nose with golden apples, poached pear, lemon rind, and hints of cream. The medium to full-bodied palate reveals bright precision, and pie crust and vanilla bean touches, while a linear, long, full and flavorful finish accents the citrus peel and exotic spice tones. White wine poached scallops, sweet peas, drizzled with zesty lemon tarragon butter, for instance, would be a match made in heaven with this marvelous Chardonnay.
Ken Bernard’s expertise is the deft ability to balance the extroverted abundance of ripeness Carneros sunshine provides with old school winemaking sensibilities to add a complex and savory dimension to his craft. This well-rated and attractively priced example offers all that intensity and purity Ancien is acknowledged for. His wines are bright, focused, exuberant and mysteriously flavorsome, all at the same time. Once you jump on the Ancien bandwagon you’ll be hooked for good.
Here’s what the wine press has to say.
93 Points – Wine Enthusiast - “Layered and expertly textured, this impressive wine offers focused flavors of apple, pear, and more exotic earth and spice components of anise and nutmeg. Medium-bodied, it’s defined in complex acidity and a marked length of integrated oak.”
What the Winery Says
2015 Carneros Chardonnay
- Ken Bernards
- 100% Chardonnay
- Napa Valley: Carneros
- 6.7 g/l
- 12 months in 33% new French oak